My chili making days began in earnest about February 2000. Yep, Y2K did NOT happen. I had myself one heckuvalot of dried beans. I plowed through the navy beans making Boston baked beans in my Boston baked bean pot.
Then I went way south and used up my black beans making beans and rice.
And then I had about 500 pounds left of 15 bean mix. They just stared at me all dry and hard and dared me to begin working through that store house. I took ‘em on. And I am here to tell you, eleven year old 15 bean mix is still hard and dry. As it turns out, we could have fed the entire neighborhood beans for three years with our storehouse! And they never go bad! I felt guilty just throwing the lot of them in the trash, so we have been working our way through those beans.
And Doris has saved the day. On a visit to their house one time, Doris had made the best chili I’d ever tasted using her mom’s secret recipe. She gave me the recipe and I’ve been making it too ever since.
I will actually be sad when my truck load of 15 bean mix is gone. Though, right now that bag of beans is still a formidable presence, so I’m not pulling out the Kleenex yet.
Before the weather turns, you might want to make one last cozy winter meal of chili along with Caitlin’s recipe for cornbread.
So, here is the wonderful recipe:
3 lbs hamburger
3 cloves garlic
1/4 lb bacon
3 cans kidney beans (Oh No You Don’t! This is the diversion step to dry 15 bean mix: bring beans to a boil, turn off heat, pour out water, repeat, repeat, repeat, then cook until tender. I heard somewhere that continually bringing to a boil in fresh water somehow makes the beans less, how shall I say it, gas producing. And it seems to work. But I digress)
1 large can of tomato juice
2 cans Hunts tomato sauce
to taste add salt, pepper,chili powder, cumin
I serve this with a dollop of sour cream topped with chopped cilantro.
So, when that last cold front slaps you in the face, fight back with this!